Time for a new face to shake up Virginia GOP

By John Fredericks

The Republican Party of Virginia has seen better days.

The Commonwealth, once a reliable red state and a key lynchpin of the GOP’s presidential map turned blue for the national Democrats twice in four years.

Adding insult to injury was former governor and now US Senator-elect Tim Kaine’s shellacking of another former Virginia governor: George Allen. Kaine ran 38,000 votes ahead of Barack Obama, while clobbering Allen by nearly a quarter million votes.

This does not bode well for the state’s establishment GOP, as the faithful gather for their annual “RPV Advance” convention in Virginia Beach next weekend. The Party elders have to come to grips with the fact they have only Gov. Bob McDonnell’s victory in 2009 to hang their hat on in the last four statewide elections, dating back to 2006.

2013 now becomes a bell-weather barometer for the future political fortunes of the Republican Party of Virginia. Another loss will likely tip the political scales of the Commonwealth from purple to blue. As such, the stakes couldn’t be higher.

Looking over the announced field of candidates for the GOP nomination for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general, every candidate except Chesapeake’s Bishop E.W. Jackson is an elected official – past or present.

It might be time for a new face to enter the mix and shake things up.

Enter Pete Snyder, stage right.

Snyder — an entrepreneur and a former Fox News analyst and nationally known conservative commentator who most recently served as the chairman of the Virginia Victory 2012 organization — is reportedly mulling a run for the GOP nomination for Virginia lieutenant governor.

Fox News founder Roger Ailes called Snyder “a strong and effective conservative voice for America” and touted Snyder’s bright future ahead, while lamenting his voluntary departure from the cable news channel.

A Snyder candidacy would add a fresh perspective to what appears to be a rather mundane and tired field of six other “been-there-done-that” or retread lieutenant governor candidates.

A one-time college wrestler, Snyder is no stranger to the transformational iconic campaign. He pioneered the world’s first social media advertising company, creating hundreds of good paying Virginia jobs in the process.

In his role as chairman of the state’s 2012 coordinated campaign for Republicans, Snyder – although losing Virginia to Obama – got a larger percentage vote swing for Romney in 2012 vs. 2008 than any of the other eight so-called “swing” states. In a relative world, Snyder outperformed his peers. He also broke all fundraising records for Victory and the party in the process.

As a technology and social media entrepreneur and a real life job creator, Snyder has the potential to elevate the campaign’s dialogue to a more visionary level, and could inspire young people on the state’s college campuses, a key group that soundly rejected Romney-Ryan-Allen in Virginia on November 6.

Could a new style conservative with a message of self determination and entrepreneurship boldly venture into the inner-city urban areas of Richmond, Portsmouth and Hampton and attempt to sway African American voters? Virginia Republicans have to expand their base. Relying on disaffected coal industry workers from the rural hinterlands and white middle-aged males to deliver them to the electoral promise land has proved to be pure folly.

In the wake of this year’s election-day massacre, it’s abundantly clear that for the state GOP to thrive it needs to change — not by trotting out the same tired and tattered message that loses Northern Virginia by 200,000 votes and falls flat on college campuses – or by becoming Tim Kaine-Lite. The new Virginia Republicans need to inspire, not lecture. They need to compel, not cajole. They need to double down on the conservative principles of ownership, personal liberty and economic freedom, not run from it, or pick and choose its application to fit their social biases.

Nominating people who actually have life’s appositeness of how the private sector works is the only sure fire way to realize a new and invigorated Republican Party of Virginia.

The state GOP needs candidates who can articulate a precise conservative message for the future that resonates with all voters – regardless of demography.

What we don’t need are more Richmond career politicians who have presided over massive increases in the size of government or tried to legislate morality — and are now looking to climb to the next government job rung — by running for Lt. governor.

John Fredericks is syndicated radio talk show host in Virginia and can be heard M-F 6-9 a.m. on WTNT –AM 730 & 102.9FM in D.C., WLEE AM 990 in Richmond and WHKT AM 1650 in Tidewater, or streaming online at www.thejohnfrederickshow.com. This is a sponsored post.

  • Isn’t Snyder out?

    • John Fredericks

      We’ll find out officially in my interview with him at 8:10 AM live on Tuesday. My gut says he’s in.

  • pinecone321

    Who in the hell are you Mr. Fredericks to come to a VA conservative site, and call all of the other announced candidates for Lt. Gov. “been there done that” or retread candidates?

    Relying on dissafected coal industry workers from the rural hinterlands and white middle aged males to deliver them to the electoral promise land has proved to be pure folly??????????????????????? Wasn’t your guy Mitt Romney relying on those “dissafected” sorry azzed coal workes to help deliver the message that the coal industry is dead under Obama, but would have been revitalized under a Romney presidency? The VA coal workers that have and will continute to lose their jobs in the coal industry should and undoubtedly be appalled at your proclamations. What an elitist statement to make.

    Who in the hel1 are you accusing of being in favor of “legislating morality”? Would that have been Bob McDonnell or Ken Cuccinelli who went after the abortion slaughter houses that were alive and thriving in VA.? Or was that a slam against one of your opponents Bishop EW Jackson who has gained a tremendous following and a damn deserved amount of respect in this state. His voice has resounded even more so since his loss for elective office.

    Where did you miss the message that Mitt Romney should have won VA easily except for his campaigns advisors, and consultants Mr. Snyder? The candidate Romney should never have lost in this state. Did you notice the massive crowds that were coming out to see what they believed to be the next president? I personally wanted to do everything possible to unseat Obama. I knew I would be throwing my shoes at the TV and radio from things Romney would have done as president. I accepted that outcome almost gleefully. I not only called one of your Victory offices once but twice, begging to do anything and everything the campaign needed to help get Obama out of the WH. I was told by one Victory office in particular that they would call me back if they thought of something my husband and I could do. At that point I said f it. Never heard back from that Victory office manager again. Orange county is as useless as boobs on a bull. They did absolutely nothing, and I mean so nothing to support Romney it was depressing. Hey, one of the voting locations went overwhelmingly for Obama. That is the first time I have ever seen any votting location in this area go for a Democrat candidate. Of course we haven’t seen Eric Cantor in these parts for so many years if you didn’t see him on TV you would forget what he looked like.

    Why ever on God’s green earth are the Republicans, and more importantly the conservatives, to keep accepting those that have proved their worth as consultants to losing campaigns, especially when the candidate would have won with proper assistance from those he was paying dearly to help him? Where was his primary campaign director Bill Bolling in the presidential campaign. Anyone see him around the state pushing Romney? Where in the heck was Bolling in this presidential campaign other than shooting off his mouth. Where in the heck was the state GOP who insured that only Romney and Paul were the selections for the primaries? Wasn’t the GOP primary one of the lowest turnouts in VA history? No one participated in the primary except the Ron Paul supporters. I can almost guarantee that Paul’s win margin in the primaries were probably the biggest the guy has ever gotten in any state primary.

    It’s too dang bad that the 2013 primary season is already starting out with the destructive attacks that eventually weaken any candidate that eventually wins the primary. I ask you Mr. Frederick to please take your sniveling, harsh, and negative attacks back to where ever you came from. I am so sick of the attack mode of campaigning it is sickening. So, where are the policies and positions that your guy is supporting in your message, or do you just have crap for the appetizer? I can only imagine what the main course will entail. Gee, if only Romney came out attacking Obama as you have the LT. Gov. candidates, Romney just might have had a better chance.

    • Dems got to run their guy up against Allen. If Snyder taints the entire LG field the dems do it again. This is bad mojo. Do we really nooed to go here again folks? Turbo does not need another toldyaso..

    • David

      Oh quit your crying. Romney didn’t lose Virginia because of “his advisors” – certainly not Snyder, who raised more money and assembled a larger grassroots army than anyone has ever done for Victory operations.

      Romney lost because Romney didn’t close the sale, and Obama’s crowds were larger, and his campaign had the luxury of a grassroots and data goldmine that they were able to build, that no Republican campaign – not even the reincarnated ghost of Ronald Reagan – would have been able to assemble in the period of time after the primary was over facing against an incumbent president with Obama’s gifts.

      You can sit in your basement and fume, stomp your feet and act like a baby all you want, but his point was correct. The Republican Party needs to expand its appeal, it needs a new direction, it needs some fresh faces, and a dude like Pete with an outsider’s perspective, the right position on issues, and a proven ability to organize and raise money, is a pretty damned good idea.

      If you don’t like that, vote for the other people. Alas, I suspect you’ll find their appeal narrower and narrower every day.

  • David Obermark

    My comment will be deleted here on Bearing Drift because it came from me.

    Problem is that the Republican Party needs more input from people like me to win elections. I come with empty pockets, but the ability to influence the votes of those who empty my pockets.

    • pinecone321

      Your problem David is that so very many have realized that your pockets aren’t, or shouldn’t be the only message. The libertarians I’ve heard say “as long as you don’t pick my pockets, or break my leg, I don’t care what you do.” It seems that the masses have discovered that what’s in your pocket is far less important than what is happening to this country in so many ways. As long as your pockets are your only message or concern, you are going to become the voice in the wilderness. As I like to call those like you, you represent the “almighty dollar party.” America is finally waking up to discover that money doesn’t buy the most important things in life.

      • David Obermark


        I guess you missed the point of my message. I try to follow Jesus. Jesus’s pockets would have been so bare that there was nothing left for the thief to pick. I do a miserable job of following Jesus, but I try to do my best. And in trying to do my best, I voted a straight Democrat ticket. I did not vote in local elections (city council, school board), I abstained.

        • pinecone321

          I dunno David. You try to follow Jesus, but you say you do a miserable job of following Jesus, and then claim that Jesus’s pocket’s would have been picked. Who do you think picked those pocket’s in the name of Jesus? Could it have been the messiah Obama who believed that he needed to pick some pockets, and put what he found in those pockets into those pockets he found more worthy, like those that supported his presidency and got things like Obamaphones for their efforts? Can anyone fill their belly, or put a roof over their heads with an Obamaphone? Did Obama make good on his promise to the 2008 lady who believed he would put gas in her car, or that he would provide a new kitchen to another? Did Obama even recently help the NJ Marina lady to get her business back up and going? Did he personally help those in Staten Island to get their electricy back, fresh water, and homes for those that have none to go back to? Despite the fact that he lied about lowering the ocean levels, he couldn’t even make good on his promise that he would protect those representing him in foreign lands. I’d bet that Chris Stevens and the other four dead Americans wouldn’t be so quick to do his dirty deeds if they knew they would be left for dead with no punishment for those who butchered them. Yet you voted straight Democrat. Good for you David, now you can lie in the bed you helped to make. And lie in that bed you will do, along with the rest of us you put there. Damn you you traitor to America and everything she’s done for you. You couldn’t have voted the way you did if so many didn’t shed their blood for you.

          • David Obermark


            I sure hope so. If Obama puts more money into my pocket my pockets are still going to end up empty at the end of the day. Well, that is not completely true, being human, I am going to try to save enough for my rapidly approaching retirement.

            Obama may not live up to all his promises, but he comes one heck of a lot closer to furthering the direction I want to see society going then I see from the threats I observe coming from Republicans on where they would lead us.

            I’ll lie in the bed I made by voting for Obama. I’ll be sleeping more soundly with Obama in the Oval Office then I would have done if Romney had been occupying it. Instead of thinking of myself as a traitor as you describe me, I think of myself as a patriot. I am a defender of the American Way unlike Republicans who are trying to destroy the American Way.

          • David Obermark

            I am going to share what I hope might become the anthem of the Obama victory at the polls. I have only one vote, but this is the one I am going to vote for:

    • Why would we delete your comment?

      • David Obermark

        Brian W., you do not totally encompass the “we” who have the power of the delete key. Perhaps I was only baited to respond to some of Brian Kirwin’s articles and he deleted them or something with the power of decision he had. It happened so often that I suffered from thinking it was a conspiracy.

        You are not witness to the comments deleted. They happened and they were multiple.

  • Nothing personal here but with Pete Snyder in the mix, Ralph Northam wins the general. Go ahead and cuss at me..

  • Josiah

    I wouldn’t dismiss Susan Stimpson as a “been there done that”, or a “retread”, or a “Richmond insider”. Nor would I consider Pete Snyder a “conservative voice”. I would consider him a rhetorically conservative but politically expedient, opportunistic, ambitious candidate who gives me no confidence either in his governing ability or his electability. The RPV must nominate the most conservative candidates possible in this year’s convention. We must not go “moderate” in pursuit of our opponent’s base, at the expense of our own base, which consists of fiscal and social conservatives. Snyder doesn’t fit that bill, and shouldn’t throw his hat in the ring if he has the good of this Commonwealth in mind.

  • Heather Stefl

    We need someone who has had to lead and govern before not in the general assembly but at the local level. We need all three jobs to be held by someone who is there to get things done and not just be a place holder for being in the majority. It is when you are in control that things get done….I am feed up with electing people who just disappoint me when they go to Washington or Richmond.

  • Sure, let’s nominate the guy whose job it was to organize VA for the GOP in 2012 and who failed miserably. Makes sense to me. /sarc It was abundantly clear that Snyder was given this post by the state GOP establishment to set him up to run for LG in 2013. I was being told by people that he was going to announce for LG after the election weeks before the election was held. He wasn’t going on FOX and doing media tours to help out Romney, Allen et al. He was doing it to raise his own political profile.

  • John Fredericks

    Pete Snyder officially announced his intentions to run for the Republican nomination for Va. Lt. Governor in a press release earlier today. He’ll be on our radio show tomorrow morning at 8:15 A.M. We can be heard on WTNT AM 730 in DC/NOVA, WLEE AM 990 in Richmond, WHKT AM 1650 in Tidewater on streaming online at http://www.thejohnfredericksshow.com. If you have a particular question you want me to ask Snyder, let me know here, or you can email me at: thejohnfredericksshow@gmail.com Or you can call the show live at 804-788-0990. Thanks.

  • “Could a new style conservative with a message of self determination and entrepreneurship boldly venture into the inner-city urban areas of Richmond, Portsmouth and Hampton and attempt to sway African American voters? Virginia Republicans have to expand their base.”

    Too funny. For a year, no one would go near Dean Longo in the 3rd because he was so focused on bringing the conservative message to the inner-city urban areas of Richmond, Portsmouth, and Hampton to sway African American voters.

    Now people are searching to find people just like him.

    • Christopher Stearns

      Good point.

  • I like Pete Snyder. I like Jeanne Marie. I like Scott Lingamfelter. I like Corey Stewart. I like Bishop Jackson. I’ve met Steve Martin once and I’ve never met Susan Stimpson so I don’t know them very well. But I do know they’re Republicans, so we’re fellow travelers at the very least. And what I also know is that I am not interested in watching another six months of the kind of petty infighting we’ve seen here just on this thread. I strongly urge all of the candidates and their surrogates to spend the next few months building their base, explaining to the potential delegates why they will make the best candidate, and stop sticking knives into the backs of our fellow Republicans. It doesn’t help the cause. Can we have one disputed nomination fight that doesn’t turn personal?

    • Good point, especially for a job description that is basically limited to saying “Are the Senators ready to vote? Have all the Senators voted? Does any Senator desire to change their vote? The clerk will close the roll.”

  • I wish I had the means and some sort of a voting base to enter politics…..a young female conservative Republican is something this state hasn’t seen in my adult life (granted, I just turned 30)…..btw, how about looking to the way the primary was fixed…err, run in Va as to why Romney never really caught on in a state that was ready to back a grassroots conservative!!

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